a three eyed, long eared alien child reminds us to be welcoming and inclusive

a three eyed, long eared alien child reminds us to be welcoming and inclusive

ages 2 to 8 years
Feeling lost, unwelcome or out of place is one of childhood’s certainties. They’re feelings that will come to every child in one measure or another. Teens, of course, continue to have those feelings, and so do adults. For displaced people, regardless of age, those feelings are frequently more than an emotional reaction—they can be the cold hard facts of life. Beegu is a displaced alien child who....

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get ready for a fun and noisy chain reaction of calamities!

get ready for a fun and noisy chain reaction of calamities!

ages 3 to 8 years
When I was in my early 20’s I was privileged to teach English in China, an amazing experience filled with people, culture and experiences. And I got to visit the Beijing Zoo.

I had no real interest in the zoo itself, but I’d always wanted to see a panda. So in 42-degree heat and what felt like 110% humidity I made my way across Beijing. And … it was rather disappointing. The panda WAS cute, but

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a movie + 3 books to delight a little dancer

a movie + 3 books to delight a little dancer

ages 2 to 5 years
Ivy has been obsessed with dance over the last six months—she wants to watch, read, do and live dance. It started when she saw the movie Ballerina and, although I think she might be almost ready to move on, these three books have had a good workout!

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bouncing balloons, fizzing sidewalk paint, milk explosions—3 down, 98 to go. We LOVE this activities book!

bouncing balloons, fizzing sidewalk paint, milk explosions—3 down, 98 to go. We LOVE this activities book!

As you can probably tell from some of my other posts, we LOVE making/creating/experimenting at home. Besides being great fun, our crafty times educate, strengthen relationships and encourage communication and vocabulary—plus they're great for fine motor skills.

I’m always on the lookout for new inspiration and, although there are millions of activities on offer on the internet, I prefer to use books.  ..... this one is chock full of boredom busters, crafts, games and simple science—there's no end of inspiration

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gentle creatures carry children to sweet slumber and peaceful dreams

gentle creatures carry children to sweet slumber and peaceful dreams

ages newborn to 8 years
It’s nice, especially on cool, dark nights, to think about how wonderful it is to dream. To dream about our friends and fun, or dream about places we have never been, or about our hopes and dreams. Dreams that beckon and entice us to a deep and peaceful sleep.

Dream Animals: A Bedtime Journey is just the book for that kind of night.  Arrays of ‘animals from long ago’ come to help children on the way to their dreams.

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a craft-y morning making music + 4 books we love: the beauty of music translated to words

a craft-y morning making music + 4 books we love: the beauty of music translated to words

ages 2 to 6 years, up to pre-teen for the books
Ivy and Angus love making music and even though it can get loud—overwhelmingly loud—I love it too, because I know it makes them happy. They do have some simple percussion toys, but they prefer to pull out all the pots and pans or make random objects into drums.

On a recent rainy day, we decided to use some of our unlimited collection of cardboard tubes to make music shakers. If you're looking for an activity that's interesting, fun and 

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combining the excitement of real letters (yes, real letters!) with the fun of fairytales is a winner for little kids

combining the excitement of real letters (yes, real letters!) with the fun of fairytales is a winner for little kids

ages 3 to 7 years
Few things are more exciting for children than receiving mail—just for them. The joy of knowing that someone is thinking of you and the excitement of finding out what’s inside makes checking the mailbox a treat. The Jolly Postman combines that with the fun of fairytales!

This was one of my favourite books growing up and it's still a hit whenever I read it aloud.

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